Last month was the launch of military operations by the United States against a group called "ISIS", short for the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, just a branch of the "Islamic State". Thing is they used to be part of Al-Qaeda but eventually outgrown them and cut ties. And it sounds to me like they want to create a middle-east wide superstate. Also I'm convinced they will try to remove all "impurities". After all drove all the Kurds into being trapped on that mountain and forced them to choose between Islam or death by their firepower or starvation. So then the united states military stepped in and after a couple of air/drone strikes against several ISIS artillery positions airlifted the people (at least most of them) out.
And I don't know why or when but then the order was given to just take ISIS out. So then they launched an all-out attack like Bill Clinton ordered against Al-Qaeda in the late 90's. The difference this time is that now more drones are being used, as well as my favorite plane for the very first time, which sometimes I wondered if it would ever see combat.
Now the reason why the Raptor was never used before is because most of the time over the past few years the people we fought were armed with things like trucks with turrets mounted in the back, RPGs, IED's, suicide bombers, and nothing in the terms of anti-air. However, this time the most important target, the ISIS central command building, was located well within a Russian-built Syrian advanced anti-aircraft network. Now President Assad has no love for ISIS, but tensions were still high because he ordered the use of chemical weapons against political dissenters and nearly caused A US military intervention, an action in which the Russians claimed would have severe consequences. But then the Syrian government agreed to turn over their chemical weapons and that war was avoided. However, this time military planers were still worried that the Syrian government would try to target our planes if they entered Syrian airspace. Now we have successfully penetrated airspace with such networks thanks to jammer aircraft and stealth planes. But those were retired, however, THIS plane just perfectly fits the bill, since it is extremely difficult to detect on radar and can go supersonic without attracting attention on IR by lighting the afterburners.
As for me personally, I have mixed feelings about this.There is always the ever present concern with collateral damage, and the spending is out of control at time. But on the other hand these ISIS thugs are everything we fear about that part of the world. I HIGHLY doubt they would invade us anytime soon since they surely would be mowed down. But could they attack us? Well, 19 religious fanatics armed only with box cutters were able to gain control of four airliners and kill nearly 3000 Americans so... And also keep in mind that because of ISIS exactly ELEVEN airliners in the region have gone unaccounted for. Think about that number, ELEVEN, noticing a pattern? And keep in mind they used to be part of the group that DID attack us. But at least this time there are no bullshit lies about weapons of mass destruction, or allegations about this only being about the oil. All of this is based upon stuff that actually has been confirmed.
Also, think about that name ISIS. Is it just me or does that sound like a really awesome G.I. Joe villain name?
ISIS: Cobra has selected ME to lead this operation! We shall make this region our empire!
Raptor: Not if I have something to say about it. EAT JDAM!
ISIS: Crap, didn't see that one coming.
Raptor: No one ever does.